Influencer Marketing FAQs

Influencer marketing is getting more advanced every day!
Stay ahead of the curve and expand your influencer marketing expertise by getting answers to the most frequently asked questions from the world of influencer marketing.

What is Influencer Marketing?

Influencer Marketing refers to the practice of advertising to a target digital audience through a trusted person or ambassador, also known as an influencer. Typically this is done through social media, where popular accounts will post sponsored messages to their followers in exchange for product and/or financial compensation.

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What is an influencer?

According to WIRED, an influencer is “someone (or something) with the power to affect the buying habits or quantifiable actions of others.” Anyone looking for an alternative to targeted advertising can consider working with influencers whose messages reach the same audience as a targeted ad but add additional value through context and a trusted endorsement.

How big is the influencer marketing industry?

Influencer marketing is projected to exceed $8 billion in value in 2020 and $15 billion by 2022, as predicted by InfluencerDB. Instagram has more than 1000 million monthly active users and with the help of newer platforms like TikTok, brands are continuously making use of advertising through content creators.

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How can I find/identify influencers?

There are many ways to find and identify influencers for possible collaborations. We also recommend reviewing aggregator channels that repost the most popular influencers and relevant content. Influencer Marketing Software solutions, search engines, lists, digital profiles, and social listening tools can be useful for identifying influencers.

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What is engagement and how does a good engagement rate look like?

Engagement is a measured consumer response to digital content. For influencer marketing, engagement typically refers to likes or comments, and engagement rate measures these metrics against total following. A good engagement rate varies by category and shouldn’t be the end-all, be-all metric for whether an influencer is influential. 


With that said, our Influencer Marketing Benchmarks Report 2019, featured in the Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, VICE, Mobile Marketer & more, breaks down trends in influencer marketing engagements over time for global markets and various categories.

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What is influencer fraud? How much does influencer fraud cost?

A July 2019 study suggested advertisers have spent more $1.3 billion on fake followers, up from what InfluencerDB’s CEO Robert Levenhagen declared a $500 million influencer fraudulence problem in his 2018 Influencer Marketing Show keynote. This wasted advertising spend strongly affects influencer marketers who operate at scale but do not use influencer marketing software built to optimize spend and results.

How can I make sure the influencers I add to my community aren’t scamming me?

There are various approaches to consider when vetting popular creators for influencer marketing partnerships. Typical vetting practices can identify scammers fairly consistently, but identifying fraudulent influencers sometimes requires influencer marketing software. Influencer marketing platforms and influencer marketing agencies can give you an expert, third-party review. Additionally, when conducting influencer marketing at scale, trial partnerships and data-driven decision making based on influencer marketing measurements can help ensure your long-term influencer marketing strategy remains full of invested influencers. 

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Which methods do fake influencers use to inflate their metrics?

Many of the common methods of inflating influencer metrics include purchasing fake followers, fake likes, fake comments, and fake story views. It’s difficult to detect these influencer fraudulence tactics with a human eye, but a good influencer marketing platform can identify influencer red flags. A few other tactics include follow-for-follow, engagement groups, and loop giveaways.

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How much does an influencer charge? How much does influencer marketing cost?

Influencer marketing costs different amounts for different advertisers. Ultimately, a value exchange exists. The most authentic partnerships can happen organically, but a significant majority of influencer marketing partnerships increase in price based on audience size, timing, and authenticity of the partnership. In some instances, alternative pricing models show better results than sticking to a “money for content” model. Many influencers will have rate cards available upon request.

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How can I measure an influencer marketing campaign?

While influencer marketing goals range from brand awareness to sales lift, new influencer marketers should be thinking about a few key metrics for measuring their influencer campaigns. To start, keep a tab on influencer NPS. Essentially, were you a good partner that the influencer wants to work with again and reference to peers? For your internal influencer marketing measurement, consider reviewing impressions, reach, engagement rates, referral traffic, or sales lift, but understand that your results can vary depending on many factors.

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What do influencer marketing agencies do?

An influencer marketing agency exists as an expert third-party brand extension for working with influencers. Influencer marketing agencies are typically employed by marketing departments that outsource influencer work, new influencer marketers, or strong brands without the full marketing staff to execute thrilling campaigns. Influencer marketing agencies usually have access to strategic influencer marketing platforms that they use to execute professional influencer campaigns all of their clients. Agencies with these softwares provide their clients with critical insights to optimize their influencer marketing along with industry best practices. 

Who are the most followed people on Instagram?

As of 12/6/19, the top most followed accounts on Instagram are:

  1. @instagram (320.5 million followers)
  2. @cristiano (192 million followers)
  3. @arianagrande (168.2 million followers)
  4. @therock (163.7 million followers)
  5. @selenagomez (163.1 million followers)
  6. @kimkardashian (153.2 million followers)
  7. @kyliejenner (152.6 million followers)
  8. @leomessi (137.8 million followers)
  9. @beyonce (135.8 million followers)
  10. @neymarjr (129.6 million followers)
  11. @justinbieber (@122.5 million followers)
  12. @kendalljenner (@119.4 million followers)
  13. @nickiminaj (@108.5 million followers)
  14. @jlo (106.5 million followers)
  15. @mileycyrus (102.1 million followers)
  16. @khloekardashian (101.3 million followers)
  17. @katyperry (87.4 million followers)
  18. @kourtneykardash (84 million followers)
  19. @kevinhart4real (82.1 million followers)
  20. @realmadrid (81.1 million followers) 

How does a person become an influencer?

The best way to become an influencer is to post regularly about a specific topic and gain a dedicated following. Marketers looking to work with professional influencers may expect influencers to have a strong understanding of business KPIs and efficient communications skills. Ultimately, the most influential people don’t get the most influencer marketing deals. The influencers who generate the most from influencer marketing do it because they know how to communicate with their audience and communicate with and on behalf of advertisers. 

What are other terms to say influencer?

Much like the word “content” encompasses all digital creation, the word “influencer” has come to reference all digital creators. However, just as content can refer to audio, writing, photography, and every communicated medium in-between, an “influencer” can be anyone. Influencer marketers looking for alternatives to influencers can instead search for for Creators, Experts, Key Opinion Leaders, and Content Creators. For each of these categories, marketers will be presented with influencer ranges by size, like nano-influencers, micro-influencers, macro-influencers, and mega-influencers.

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How much do Instagram ads cost?

In an interview conducted prior to his keynote at Digital Marketing World Forum, InfluencerDB’s CEO Robert Levenhagen mentioned that advertising through influencers allowed consumers to easily and scalably opt-in to social media marketing.

On that note, social media marketing is still rather undervalued for its effectiveness relative to legacy marketing practices, and when done right, influencer marketing on Instagram is still the most effective form of social advertising.

What do I need to start an influencer ambassador program?

Marketers who want to move beyond transactional influencer advertising toward a holistic influencer relations strategy will need to make key strategic decisions to ensure all the positive long-term effects of an effective influencer ambassador program. As CMOs restructuring departments begin to account for influencer marketing teams, it’s critical for influencer marketing executives to set realistic expectations about timing and measurements. Building ambassador relationships takes time and energy but provides excellent long-term results. 

What is influencer relations?

As opposed to influencer advertising, which refers to transactional relationships, influence relations means building long-term relationships with influencers as brand partners and brand ambassadors. Marketers who employ a long-term influencer strategy should be doing influencer relations.

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Does influencer marketing have a place in my marketing plan?

Our State of the Industry 2019 Report found that half of all influencer marketing was done by fashion, food, and entertainment marketers. Following these verticals, baby influencers, humor influencers, and beauty influencers fill the next quarter. Finally, influencer marketing case studies and workflows exists for art, travel, holiday, animals, fitness, sport, automotive, decor, technology, and even healthcare and gaming, too. Essentially, influencer marketing probably has a place in your marketing plan, but you need to be willing to commit to doing it right. Popular beauty company Estée Lauder famously spends 75% of its marketing on influencers (75%) but influencer marketing does also display great results for start-up brands with small budgets.

What are the main influencer business categories?

InfluencerDB’s Influencer Marketing Cloud allows users to filter influencers by the following verticals: Art, Automotive, Beauty, Events & Holidays, Family, Fashion & Style, Fitness, Food & Drinks, Home & Decor, Humor, Lifestyle, Music, Pets & Animals, Sports, Technology & Service, Travel, TV & Movies.

Are there benchmarks for a standard influencer marketing campaign?

Yes. InfluencerDB published an Instagram Influencer Marketing Benchmarks Report in July 2019 that set the standard for the influencer marketing industry after getting published in Fast Company, Mobile Marketer, Wall Street Journal & many more. A summary of that report is available here

How do I measure the ROI of Influencer Marketing?

How you measure ROI of influencer marketing depends on the scale of your influencer marketing activities and your overall goals. For instance, if you run one transactional campaign, you will have a clear idea of your results based on common influencer metrics and any internal sales and traffic measurements. However, large influencer marketing organizations execution influencer marketing at scale must quickly generate consistent reporting on influencer marketing campaigns and programs for a variety of key stakeholders across the business. These influencer marketing organizations benefit significantly from a standard influencer marketing software designed to streamline internal marketing communications and prove ROI on marketing.

What is a micro-influencer?

Micro-influencers have a small amount of followers. They are very connected in their field and have a strong connection to their community. Collaborating with micro-influencers can be advantageous for your brand as they usually have higher engagement rates than large-scale influencers and appear very authentic.

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How do I reach out to influencers?

There are several ways to contact influencers. Usually, the first contact happens via e-mail or at events. Keep in mind that time is a limited resource of influencers and most of them receive multiple partnership proposals each day. A personal, elaborate approach is key! 

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What are the most popular social media platforms?

As of October 2019, the most popular social network, ranked by number of active users, is Facebook, followed by YouTube, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, WeChat and Instagram. 


Statistic: Most popular social networks worldwide as of October 2019, ranked by number of active users (in millions) | Statista
Find more statistics at Statista

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